WHO? Lauren, Joyce (Lauren's mama!), Jude, Mel & Collier
WHERE/WHEN (...and also another WHAT)?
7/7 LetterKenny, Ireland - Steeple (both!)
7/12 Joensuu Games Joensuu, Finland - C: 3000 M: 1500 or 800
7/16 Savo Games Lapinlahti, Finland - C: Steeple M: 1500 or 800
7/22 Heusden, Belgium - M: 5K
7/25 Karlstad GP - C: steeple
C: Why not? We've been talking about this for a while. Mel and I, probably, have been talking about it for years... like half our lives. Europe has always had the post US Championship draw of having a lot of meets all over the place. US Champs end and if you [insert one or all of the following] aren't hurt, didn't make the team (or a final), don't have a college XC season to get ready for but you're pretty fit you just kind of go "well now what?"
M: In the past one/both of us have been hurt or not fit enough or didn't know how to go about getting into meets or it just wasn't an option for where we were. This year those pieces (with A LOT of help) came together.
L: To show these women the ropes of racing overseas before international travel gets a lot harder with baby #2! These meets can be wacky with weird travel and communal dorms and having a coach on site to help buffer is good.
MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO?
C: Different race environments? Venues? Fans? Languages on the sidelines? Are they actually different? I don't even know.
M: The languages, I'm fairly confident, will be different and at the very least accents; but the rest of it I have no idea. Also just the adventure of it; new places, I love a good [I will replace "good" with a more appropriate adjective when I get back] adventure and this is definitely going to be an adventure.
C: Traveling, which sounds ridiculous; because "Hello? Why are you going to four countries if you're nervous about traveling?" Let me explain. I imagine the travel/race balance will be a little tough; turn around times are tight and the lead up to race days will have an inevitable increase in uncontrollables. So it's gotta be a go with the flow situation.
JOYCE: Making it to the airports on time
JUDE: I'm kinda nervous there's gonna be a king because I don't really think he's going to be nice.
L: Time zone changes and kids. We have to hit the ground running so there isn't time to let Jude settle in easy. We have a couple long drives that could be interesting, on the wrong side of the road in Ireland with about a million roundabouts according to google maps, and with road signs that are unfamiliar in Finland.
C: Probably cinnamon? This should not be a surprise considering how much cinnamon I use.
JUDE: My planets placemat
L: Enough Picky Bars for Armageddon
GOALS FOR THE TRIP?
M+ C: Get a PR or a couple, find a leprechaun, have fika in Sweden, sauna in Finland, waffle in Belgium, find a Picky Bar we've put a sticker on (looking at you Sweden), and most importantly (because none of those other things really matter... except the PR that one we really care about) soak in the entire experience and learn as much as we can in every aspect of the trip.
Good luck, Little Wing! Head up. Wings out!